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The SPE Library contains thousands of papers, presentations, journal briefs and recorded webinars from the best minds in the Plastics Industry. Spanning almost two decades, this collection of published research and development work in polymer science and plastics technology is a wealth of knowledge and information for anyone involved in plastics.

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Conference Proceedings
THE MECHANICAL/THERMAL PROPERTIES OF MICROCELLULAR INJECTION MOLDED POLY-LACTIC-ACID(PLA) NANOCOMPOSITES
Shyh-shin Hwang , Peming P. Hsu , Jui-pinYang , Ray-Guan Tsai, May 2008
This study investigated the influence of montmorillonite (MMT) content on the mechanical/thermal properties of microcellular injection molded Polylactide (PLA)/clay nanocomposites. Carbondioxide (CO2) was the blowing agent. The PLA/MMTnanocomposites were prepared by twin screw extrusion.The results showed that as MMT content is increased tensile strength impact strength and cell density decrease.This is caused by the speed degradation of PLA due to the addition of MMT. MMT decreases the crystallization temperature but increases the decomposition temperature of the nanocomposites. The XRD results showed that the layer spacing of the clay increases as MMT content increases. TEM pictures showed that the MMT is well dispersed within the PLA matrix.
EFFECT OF ORGANOCLAY ON THE MECHANICAL / THERMAL PROPERTIES OF MICROCELLULAR INJECTION MOLDED POLYSTYRENE-CLAY NANOCOMPOSITES
Shyh-shin Hwang , Sung-po Li , Ching-hsin Hu , Cheng-lung Lee, May 2008
An organically modified montmorillonite was compounded with polystyrene (PS) in a twin-screw extruder. The organoclay polystyrene nanocomposites were then injection molded by conventional and microcellular methods. Nitrogen was used as the blowing agent. The effect of organoclay content on the mechanical and thermal properties was investigated. The results showed that when the MMT content was 1 wt% the nanocomposites have maximum tensile strength wear resistance and cell density. Moreover the addition of organoclay increases the glass transition and decomposition temperature of the nanocomposites. The XRD results showed that the layer spacing of the nanocomposites decreases by comparison with the organoclay. TEM pictures showed that MMT is well dispersed within the PS matrix.
CONTROL OF DENSITY AND MODULUS IN DIE DRAWN PP COMPOSITES
P. Caton-Rose , I. M. Ward , G. Thompson , P D Coates, May 2008
Polymer chain orientation achieved through the die drawing process has been shown to significantly improve the mechanical properties of both filled and unfilled polymer products1. However inclusion of filler particles tends to result in localised cavitation and subsequent propagation which reduces stiffness enhancements. By tailoring production parameters such as rate temperature and geometry it is possible to control both the modulus and density of the final product to given specifications. Within this paper we demonstrate the effects of die angle and temperature on the final sample properties of a civil engineering product and their optimisation to manufacture a low density high stiffness component.
CONTROL OF DENSITY AND MODULUS IN DIE DRAWN PP COMPOSITES
P. Caton-Rose , I. M. Ward , G. Thompson , P D Coates, May 2008
Polymer chain orientation achieved through the die drawing process has been shown to significantly improve the mechanical properties of both filled and unfilled polymer products. However, inclusion of filler particles tends to result in localised cavitation and subsequent propagation, which reduces stiffness enhancements. By tailoring production parameters such as rate, temperature and geometry it is possible to control both the modulus and density of the final product to given specifications. Within this paper we demonstrate the effects of die angle and temperature on the final sample properties of a civil engineering product and their optimisation to manufacture a low density high stiffness component.
TEACHING MOLD DESIGN: FROM CONCEPT TO CREATION
Stephen Johnston , David Kazmer, May 2008
Traditionally mold design has been taught on a theoretical basis where student’s designs never leave the drawing board. Today’s computer aided manufacturing techniques allow for hands-on design projects. A junior level mold design engineering class was revised to include an intensive art-to-part project. Given constraints students designed new plastic parts manufactured the tooling using CAM software and CNC machining and injection molded prototype parts. In addition to mold design students learned machine tool practices and the difficulties associated with commissioning new tools. The project required considerable initial investment but was met with an overwhelmingly positive response.
TEACHING MOLD DESIGN: FROM CONCEPT TO CREATION
Stephen Johnston , David Kazmer, May 2008
Traditionally mold design has been taught on a theoretical basis where studentƒ??s designs never leave the drawing board. Todayƒ??s computer aided manufacturing techniques allow for hands-on design projects. A junior level mold design engineering class was revised to include an intensive art-to-part project. Given constraints, students designed new plastic parts, manufactured the tooling using CAM software and CNC machining, and injection molded prototype parts. In addition to mold design, students learned machine tool practices and the difficulties associated with commissioning new tools. The project required considerable initial investment, but was met with an overwhelmingly positive response.
ANALYSIS OF IN DIE CAVITATION DURING THE DIE DRAWING OF COMPOSITE MATERIALS
P. Caton-Rose , I. M. Ward , G. Thompson , P D Coates, May 2008
Combining molecular orientation of polymer chains with short glass fibre reinforcement has been shown to significantly improve material stiffness in the direction of orientation1. Replacement of the stiff glass fibres with inorganic fillers also has the capability of improving mechanical performance of oriented composites but at a reduced production cost. Orientation is achieved via a batch die drawing process 5 to 20 oC below the melt temperature of the polypropylene inorganic composite material. This experimental investigation has now been extended to consider cavitation around particulates within the composite material during the die drawing process using macroscopic and microscopic finite element models validated via image analysis and density measurements of actual drawn components. Within this paper we demonstrate the modelling route to achieve micro-scale predictions of cavitation based on a macroscopic analysis of the complete component through a technique known as submodelling.
ANALYSIS OF IN DIE CAVITATION DURING THE DIE DRAWING OF COMPOSITE MATERIALS
P. Caton-Rose , I. M. Ward , G. Thompson , P D Coates, May 2008
Combining molecular orientation of polymer chains with short glass fibre reinforcement has been shown to significantly improve material stiffness in the direction of orientation. Replacement of the stiff glass fibres with inorganic fillers also has the capability of improving mechanical performance of oriented composites but at a reduced production cost. Orientation is achieved via a batch die drawing process 5 to 20 oC below the melt temperature of the polypropylene inorganic composite material. This experimental investigation has now been extended to consider cavitation around particulates within the composite material during the die drawing process using macroscopic and microscopic finite element models validated via image analysis and density measurements of actual drawn components. Within this paper we demonstrate the modelling route to achieve micro-scale predictions of cavitation based on a macroscopic analysis of the complete component through a technique known as submodelling.
A STUDY OF USING FILLED PLASTIC BOTTLES AS CRASH BARRIERS
S.H. Masood, May 2008
This paper presents an experimental investigation on the capability of using commercially available plastic bottles as energy absorbing devices for safety crash barrier applications. The compression tests are conducted in vertical and horizontal orientations with bottles of various sizes and with a variety of filler materials such as air water foam sand and paper pulp and also with mixture of such fillers. Results are compared in terms of varying plastic bottle size bottle orientation and filler types.Results show that commercially available plastic bottles with proper orientation and appropriate filler materials are capable of absorbing significant amounts of crash energy.
DISPERSION OF FUNCTIONALIZED CARBON NANOFIBERS IN THERMOPLASTIC POLYURETHANES
Guillermo A. Jimenez , Sadhan C. Jana, May 2008
Carbon nanofibers - as received oxidized and functionalized with polyol - were mixed with thermoplastic polyurethanes (TPU) at the time of in situ synthesis in a chaotic mixer. The TPU was synthesized from polypropylene glycol butanediol and 4 4'-diphenylmethane diiocyanate. The degree of nanofiber dispersion was analyzed using hard segment hydrogen bonding. It was found that functionalized carbon nanofibers showed more interactions with hard and soft segments in TU. Consequently these fibers dispersed well promoted mixing between the hard and soft segment phases and prompted an increase of glass transition temperature.
FOAM INJECTION MOLDING OF CELLULOSE FIBER REINFORCED POLYPROPYLENE COMPOSITES
T. Kuboki , J.W.S. Lee , C.B. Park , M. Sain, May 2008
This paper investigates the effects of the fiber content and the processing conditions such as the shot size and the injection speed on the foaming behavior of injection molded composite foams made from cellulose fiber reinforced polypropylene. Composites are injection molded by using an advanced structural foam molding machine with a physical blowing agent N2. Foamed specimens are prepared with different injection speeds and void fractions while the mold pressure profile void fraction and foam morphology are characterized. The results suggest that there is an optimum fiber content for the cell morphology of injection molded composite foams made of cellulose fiber reinforced polypropylene.
FOAM INJECTION MOLDING OF CELLULOSE FIBER REINFORCED POLYPROPYLENE COMPOSITES
T. Kuboki , J.W.S. Lee , C.B. Park , M. Sain, May 2008
This paper investigates the effects of the fiber content and the processing conditions, such as the shot size and the injection speed, on the foaming behavior of injection molded composite foams made from cellulose fiber reinforced polypropylene. Composites are injection molded by using an advanced structural foam molding machine with a physical blowing agent, N2. Foamed specimens are prepared with different injection speeds and void fractions while the mold pressure profile, void fraction and foam morphology are characterized. The results suggest that there is an optimum fiber content for the cell morphology of injection molded composite foams made of cellulose fiber reinforced polypropylene.
EXPERIMENTAL STUDY OF EXTRUSION AND SURFACE TREATMENT OF ORGANO CLAY WITH PET NANOCOMPOSITES
Karnik Tarverdi , Somchoke Sontikaew, May 2008
The use of organoclay in polymers is expected to increase on average annually by about 5 percent. This paper describes melt blending techniques using PET nanocomposites containing commercially available organoclays with different percentage of surfactant coatings. This paper will also evaluate the morphology and mechanical properties of the composites using a range of techniques like scanning electron microscope melt rheology andthermal analysis. Comparisons will be made between properties of amorphous and semi crystalline films in terms of surfactant used and material properties. It will be demonstrated that the quantity of surfactant used with the organoclays can significantly affect dispersion and properties of composites produced.
THE EFFECT OF RESIDUAL STRESSES ON BIOLINKER PROTEIN G ADHESION TO PMMA
Nicholas George , Leslie R. Farris , Sung-hwan Yoon , Melisenda McDonald , Carol Barry, May 2008
The ability to manufacture micro-scale features on polymers with good optical properties has proven to be useful in biomedical applications such as microelectromechanical systems (Bio-MEMS). High rate manufacturing of such Bio-MEMS could be accomplished through the injection molding process. A drawback to the injection molding process is the occurrence of residual stresses as a result of flow induced orientation. In bio-MEMS applications the directed adsorption of bio sensing molecules like antibodies to the surface is critical. A patented PMMA bacterial Protein G antibody orientation method previously reported termed ALYGNSA can be used to achieve such adsorption. The bacterial protein G linker protein is used in part on two residual stressed (high and low) injection molded micro-fluidic patterned PMMA discs. Results indicate low residual stress may aid the adsorption of Protein G and enhancement of antibody orientation.
THE EFFECT OF RESIDUAL STRESSES ON BIOLINKER PROTEIN G ADHESION TO PMMA
Nicholas George , Leslie R. Farris , Sung-hwan Yoon , Melisenda McDonald , Carol Barry, May 2008
The ability to manufacture micro-scale features on polymers with good optical properties has proven to be useful in biomedical applications such as microelectromechanical systems (Bio-MEMS). High rate manufacturing of such Bio-MEMS could be accomplished through the injection molding process. A drawback to the injection molding process is the occurrence of residual stresses as a result of flow induced orientation. In Bio-MEMS applications the directed adsorption of bio sensing molecules, like antibodies, to the surface is critical. A patented PMMA, bacterial Protein G antibody orientation method previously reported termed ALYGNSA can be used to achieve such adsorption. The bacterial protein G linker protein is used in part on two residual stressed (high and low) injection molded micro-fluidic patterned PMMA discs. Results indicate low residual stress may aid the adsorption of Protein G and enhancement of antibody orientation.
DEVELOPMENTS ON PROPYLENE-ETHYLENE COPOLYMERS BLENDS WITH STYRENE BLOCK COPOLYMERS
Nei S. Domingues, May 2008
Thermoplastic Elastomers (TPEs) based on styrene block copolymers such as SBS and SEBS still draw technological and scientific interest because their low cost formulations combine the entropy-elasticity of elastomers with the processability of thermoplastics. This class of material plays an important role in replacing many traditional thermo-set rubber applications. Metallocene catalysts provided a broad range of new olefin based copolymers. Among them the propylene a-olefin copolymers had a fast growth in TPE scenario as modifier in polymer blends because of their properties. In a previous paper we discussed the use of metallocene based ethylene-octene copolymers in blends with SBCs. They provide the right balance of costperformance when used as an elastomeric extender. In this study we demonstrate the effect of different metallocene based propylene -olefins copolymers (PAO) in blends with SBCs. The results achieved for the PAO containing compounds indicate that such family of materials can be tailored to yield new TPEs with a combination of desirable softness and mechanical properties with improved processing.
DEVELOPMENTS ON PROPYLENE-ETHYLENE COPOLYMERS BLENDS WITH STYRENE BLOCK COPOLYMERS
Nei S. Domingues , Carolina C. J. R. Bulhões, May 2008
Thermoplastic Elastomers (TPEs) based on styrene block copolymers such as SBS and SEBS still draw technological and scientific interest because their low cost formulations combine the entropy-elasticity of elastomers with the processability of thermoplastics. This class of material plays an important role in replacing many traditional thermo-set rubber applications. Metallocene catalysts provided a broad range of new olefin based copolymers. Among them the propylene a-olefin copolymers had a fast growth in TPE scenario as modifier in polymer blends because of their properties. In a previous paper we discussed the use of metallocene based ethylene-octene copolymers in blends with SBCs. They provide the right balance of costperformance when used as an elastomeric extender. In this study we demonstrate the effect of different metallocene based propylene -olefins copolymers (PAO) in blends with SBCs. The results achieved for the PAO containing compounds indicate that such family of materials can be tailored to yield new TPEs with a combination of desirable softness, and mechanical properties, with improved processing.
REALISTIC APPEARANCE OF WOOD GRAINS FORMED WITH SMART BLENDERS ON SURFACES AND INSIDE EXTRUDED PLASTICS
Dave Zumbrunnen , Mike Zumbrunnen, May 2008
Smart blending machines operate by chaotic advection a new sub-field of fluid mechanics. Melts that are introduced into them become converted to multi-layers of controllable average thickness. Upon extrusion patterns can be readily generated inside and on film sheet tubes or other shapes that have the appearance of realistic wood grains. Moreover simulated wood grains can be varied through on-line control. An infinite variety of grains can be formed or a specific grain can be repeated at desired intervals. In this paper the machines and process are described and examples are presented.
REALISTIC APPEARANCE OF WOOD GRAINS FORMED WITH SMART BLENDERS ON SURFACES AND INSIDE EXTRUDED PLASTICS
Mike Zumbrunnen , Dave Zumbrunnen, May 2008
Smart blending machines operate by chaotic advection, a new sub-field of fluid mechanics. Melts that are introduced into them become converted to multi-layers of controllable average thickness. Upon extrusion, patterns can be readily generated inside and on film, sheet, tubes or other shapes that have the appearance of realistic wood grains. Moreover, simulated wood grains can be varied through on-line control. An infinite variety of grains can be formed or a specific grain can be repeated at desired intervals. In this paper, the machines and process are described and examples are presented.
RHEOMETERS FOR HIGH-THROUGHPUT POLYMER CHARACTERIZATION
John M. Dealy, May 2008
High-throughput rheological characterization has applications in many industries but dealing with molten polymers poses special challenges. For purposes of structure determination however rheology has potential advantages over GPC. There is currently no commercial rhometric device that can make rapid measurements on very small samples of molten polymers. However descriptions of several devices designed to accomplish this have been described in presentations and publications. The deformations involved include capillary torsional shear and squeeze flows. Each of these approaches has its advantages and disadvantages and it is not yet clear which if any of them will be able to meet the stringent requirements of high-throughput characterization.


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